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Old 02-11-2008, 08:17 AM   #1
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Degenerative D-disease does not always mean MS?

Hi everyone I would like anyones opinion on the subject of having a degenerative disc. This dx does'nt necessarily mean it's MS correct? it can be from an injury, or other means.

Your input would be appreciated. TY

 
Old 02-11-2008, 12:27 PM   #2
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Re: Degenerative D-disease does not always mean MS?

Degenerative disc disease (DDD) is not MS. If you have a disc pushing against nerves then it's possible to have neurological symptoms.

MS is a disease of the central nervous system (CNS). MS is an autoimmune disease and has nothing to do with with degenerative disc disease.

Hope that helps.
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Last edited by Snoopy61; 02-11-2008 at 12:27 PM.

 
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Old 02-11-2008, 02:30 PM   #3
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Re: Degenerative D-disease does not always mean MS?

Avenue,

DDD happens as we age ,it can be from a fall or a injury.

DDD is outside the spinal cord as MS is inside the spinal cord.

I have DDD and MS.

T

 
Old 02-12-2008, 12:11 PM   #4
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Re: Degenerative D-disease does not always mean MS?

Re: Is there always numbness with MS?

Snoopy61 and Duttin. Thank you both very much for your reply. Scoopy, from what I have read you just confirmed what I was thinking for years. Now it is ever clearer why one neurologist told me that I could have sued the neurologist in the pass who lead me to believe that DDD went hand in hand with a dx's in MS. I was quite surprise that a doctor would even infer something like that about another doctor. She wasn't surprise he said that since the technology then wasn't available to doctor's back in the early 80's like today's (MRI).

The x-ray may have picked up on something but it must have been very small, since all my life it never caused me any problem....hell I never even so much as had a back ache..But nevertheless with everything he said about MS and a degenerative disc. It had all made perfectly logical sense...since my siblings had MS. But I will say this (and) although many would not agree with me....if I do/did have MS it wasn't ever present to me. As a matter of fact it will be 33 years this fall that a dx's was established and to this very day I can say I don't nor ever had any ms symptoms.....(besides that numbness event.

Now my piriformis injury I had in 1988, is another thing entirely.

Duttin if like you say that DDD happens with age...when I was told I had DDD I was only in my early 30's and in great shape, very active in sports etc. And never had a back ache to speak of. I'm not saying your wrong by no means because I just read what you mentioned...' that age is a factor'. I'm sorry that you have DDD and MS, I hope you do well with it and it doesn't cause you must pain or discomfort.

Snoopy and Duttin, I hope you don't think I am exaggerating, because every word is the truth. I guess that's what makes us all different.

Ave...

 
Old 02-12-2008, 10:42 PM   #5
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Re: Degenerative D-disease does not always mean MS?

Ave,

When a neurologist spoke that DDD and MS can go hand in hand he did not mispoke.

With MS many have spasms or spasticity and it can occur in the paraspinal muscles,when this becomes chronic it can cause tightness of the spinal column,thus contributing to the DDD.

When lesions are present in the spinal column it can weaken the spinal cord,thus making it easier for a DDD to occur over time.

When DRs speak of DDD,they can refer to many disorders of the spine,bulging disk,desication(loss of water to disk),arthritis and so forth.Today its used as a general term.

I was told I had DDD in my late 20's and diagnosed with MS at 33.I was healthy,fit,had 4 children, and worked.

DDD does not cause MS and MS does not cause DDD.

ave, this is what was explained to me through my MS specialist and neurosurgeon.As I ask how could I end up with herniated disk in the thoracic without being in an accident,the paraspinal spasticity.

This is a good question ,I'm glad you brought it up,I hope more reply as I know others have posted about DDD ,bulging disk and disk herniations and having MS.

AVE, do you have MS?

I'm doing good with the MS and the DDD,its all manageable,my spine is a train wreck(lol).I had 2 lumbar surgeries 10 years ago and I think my spine had the domino effect and the MS was just an added bonus after the surgeries.

 
Old 02-16-2008, 09:40 AM   #6
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Re: Degenerative D-disease does not always mean MS?

Duttin....sorry I didn't post sooner. In reply to your response I'm thinking from what you tell me spasms and spasticity are much common place..not always but a possible contributor in DDD.

I don't nor have ever had such a problem with spasticity nor spasm. Please understand that whatever I may tell you it's what I experience. My symptoms might be very much less the MS symptoms but I have been told . And yes I do have MS.

There does seem to be some contradiction in the things I've heard and it confuses me. Especially not having the topical characteristic that show specifically and indefinitely I demonstrate MS symptoms. And I understand perfectly well it can take years to determine a yes or no or unequivocally if a person does have the disease. After 32 years I would think someone should know for sure. But If my MRI's say yes then its so.

Duttin, would have an answer to this question???. Your very welcome to take a stab at it also I welcome your opinion.

*So if it is DDD I do have, shouldn't I've had back problems for years or at least at some point in my life 'but I never have'. I was told from an x-ray that I do have a small disc separation but nothing that ever needed attention. You don't want doctors doing any surgery to your back unless its a certain necessary it may just open a can of worms for anyone....I've read many stories on back surgery and some people only regretted having done it.

But if you have an answer to DDD..... 'and there should always be some kind of back pain'???? your input please. Take care and glad your DDD is manageable for you.

My appreciation in advance...

 
Old 02-16-2008, 10:21 AM   #7
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Re: Degenerative D-disease does not always mean MS?

Scoopy61 ...I'm just tossing tmy post in here only since I can't seem to fine where it was that you posted your story having MS for 22 years. It is so great hearing you say 22 years and your still RRMS, with not using any DMD's in the past.. I would have to agree with you since I never took and DMD's myself. Until I had Gallbladder surgery in 2003 and a neuro said maybe its time I start. It wasn't that I was having any ms problems (because I haven't had any since my numbness event in 1975. I guess he felt that it was the best thing to do after years of (possibly allowing this disease a better opportunity to be trigger by what ever it is that causes it to triggers itself...... sorry I didn't really know how to quiet put it .

Because in the length of time I've been told I have MS I only had the one MS episode. So this neuro must have felt he was watching my back for the longer haul. You mentioned that you had 6 exacerbation in 22 yrs. The word exacerbations hasn't ever been in my vocabulary...nor the term flare-up. Because in my 32 years I never had any problems with MS symptoms at all...notta. Yet I have MS(only the numbness in 75').

Who was I to question the neuro...especially that I do have MS for so many years.. But not having any symptoms I thought the same way you did...why start now with drugs..... I been perfectly fine. Besides I was never the person to welcome prescription drugs into my body. So I never thought of introduce a modifying MS drug, I felt my body was handling it just fine on its own for so many years, so why introduce a foreign substances into my body. I was fearful it just might do the wrong thing...But when I ask the neuro (when should I start?) the neuro said "actually you should have started yesterday" meaning years ago and with that said of course he scared the living hell out of me" he just added start right now. So for me it wasn't a personal choose (it was 'FEAR', I guess I felt he just might be right.

Being skeptical once I did leave the hospital...it did take me two months to finally get up the courage to start taking it ...and it was Copaxone that he prescribed. I really can't say it has helped me only because I never had symptoms that I can see a difference with. I told my doctor the same thing when he would inquired . I told him.... "How can I determine if something is working when their isn't anything to compare it with.

I told him (dr.) it would be different if I had problems like fatigue or visual problems etc but since I don't. How! could I possible give any comparisons relating to " the before and after if things remain the normal.

Sorry for the ranting but it is good to vent . So thanks for the ear. You go girl I'm so glad your doing so well after 22 yrs.... kudos .

Hugs

 
Old 02-16-2008, 12:55 PM   #8
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Re: Degenerative D-disease does not always mean MS?

AvenueQ, I think it's truly amazing and wonderful you haven't had any symptoms or exacerbations since 1975

It's fear that keeps me from using a DMD at this stage of the game - fear the DMDs will cause more problems than they would ever solve and possibly making me worse.

At the first appointment with my current neuro he was not happy I wasn't on a DMD. He did a neuro exam and looked at the MRIs I brought. He then told me "do not change a single thing your doing." He does not want me on a DMD.

My MS started in the cervical spine and to this day I only have 2 brain lesions but numerous c-spine lesions. Based on the c-spine MRI I should not be doing as well as I am. Because of those c-spine lesions I should not be ambulatory without a mobility aid(s) but I am. There is no logical reason for my abilities. I really believe my body doesn't realize it's not supposed to do what it's doing and I have no explaination.

Is it possible the disease will catch up to me, kicking me big time in the butt? Yes, but that could be the case for anyone even if they use the DMDs.

I am not anti-drug. I have symptoms and I will use symptom management meds if needed and as long as they help me with few if any side affects.

Was your neuro able to tell you how you would know if Copaxone was working?

The DMDs are supposed to slow progression and hopefully space out exacerbations. Some have reported an improvement in symptoms but these drugs were not meant to help with symptoms.

My exacerbations, one per each of these years:

1986
1987
1994
2001
2002
2007

My neuros doubt the DMDs could have spaced the exacerbations out any better than what my body has done all on it's own.

If someone is looking to the MRI to prove the DMD is working that's not really reliable since lesions can and do disappear with a patient having more or less lesions even without drugs.

Yes, I have been diagnosed for 22 years but I have had symptoms since I was a kid and just recently had another symptom show up that was around when I was about 12 years old and beyond. I am still thrown when that happens, to realize what I found painful or annoying as a kid was really MS.

AvenueQ, You do what you have to for your health. If that means following your neuros advice and using Copaxone then that's what you do.

Wishing you all the best

By the way - I don't recommend someone approach their disease the same way I do since there is no way to know if someone will have the same outcome as myself. Just a different view of this disease.
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Last edited by Snoopy61; 02-16-2008 at 01:00 PM.

 
Old 02-18-2008, 10:02 AM   #9
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Re: Degenerative D-disease does not always mean MS?

Snoopy61...Thanks for saying so. I am very grateful the way things have gone with the MS. For years I really never had to see a neurologist since there wasn't ever a need to. So with that said the only reason I had to even see a neuro the past few years was after a auto accident.and seeing a chiropractor for whiplash and months later a manipulation/adjustment had gone terrible wrong and causing me injury to the piriformis muscle. Which lead to10 loooong years of excruciating buttock left leg pain. From that day on I was labeled as having a sciatic problem.NOT!

And that's when my trouble all started. This brought me only ten year of find a reason for this on going and getting more debilitating pain...which I new dam well it was never a sciatic problem. As far as I was concerned it was a man made problem and was only covered up for the chiro's sake not mine that's for sure. And you can take that comment to the bank.

It was in 1997,and after numerous try's to find out just what this pain was. I felt the more I tried to eradicate the pain the worse it got for me. I would have to say the worse therapy I tried was the Vax-D therapy, I think that only contributed to making this pain WORST.

I decided to see another neurologist This neuro I chose to see was a well respected man in the medical community, plus his speciality was MS. My only complaint had been this unrelenting buttocks - left leg pain since the injury. I felt that I was in good hands knowing he was much respected in his field. The pain I had been enduring for the past looooooooongest 10 years (probably known to mankind)..He sent me for an MRI of the brain plus the lower extremities with and without contrast. They had come back saying that the pain I was complaining about, I actually had no reason to be complaining about. It seemed that my complaint of left side buttock and leg pain didn't seem to figure in with what the brains left-hemisphere picture was showing.

According to my pain being on the left-side the activity he seen was opposite my pain complaint. Plus what he did see were dead activity more likely from the event of numbness back in 75'. I felt it wasn't related one thing the pain had always remained in one place all the time...and I don't believe that's how MS works true? I sort out further help and (this would be my fourth attempt with pain management.

For the pass ten years that had following my injury and after I had been 'Labeled' as having a sciatic problem. This label had continued to follow me along with my medical records from doctor to dr.. Every attempt had been focused on what the chiropractor had labeled it as being (sciatic). But my last and final attempt, I demanded this dr. followed my request and inject the 'piriformis muscle' and not the sciatic nerve. To make a long story short the injections were only to be focus and intended specifically and only to the periformis muscle.....and not the sciatic nerve. Which worked out beautifully I was and still am pain free to this day. The buttocks and leg pain are now gone for the pass 7 years and I mean totally gone .It did take time but the initial amount of intense pain had seem to gradually be finally understood. I new what I was trying so hard to convey over and over
but NO ONE WAS LISTENING TO WHAT I HAD TO SAY or just didn't want to hear.


What I was saying all along that it wasn't a sciatic problem at all. I thought the rule of thumb all a long. That it was for the best interest of the patient that a doctor always needed to know the origin of the pain....BUT CERTAINLY NOT IF ANOTHER DR.CAUSED you the pain. I

I stronly believe that if I hadn't been so assertive I'd still be dealing with that same pain.


But! (there's always a but) unfortunately this PM doctor I had seen was new in the field of pain management and I seriously think he may have over used the amount of units that he injected. Because they cause me a ridiculous amount of other problems and again unrelated to ms. Did either my PCP or the PM dr. come forward explaining what may have happen.... not on your life. They both simply clamed up leaving me looking like the fool. To this very day my precious PCP won't even acknowledge the number of things that had occurred to me from the injections. Plus if they had nothing to hide (why do my record show blank) of my numerous complaints that followed the last series of injections.

I only know recently from other's that suffer from a piriformis problem that he new exactly what the amount was given and it was 200 units which he knows now was to much. And he came to know later that his dr. was new to PM . I call his statement food for thought he also felt that being new to PM.Just maybe was using him as a guinea pig.
And I'm beginning to think that might be exactly what may have happen in my situation and that's why there weren't any medical records kept on all my complaints that followed the final injection. Oh yes they put me through hell. And still refuse my mail requesting my medical records.

Sorry moving on to what you posted............I understand that DMD's don't change someone symptoms since the main purpose is to stop the progression.

Anyway as far as the MS catching up to all of us. who's to say things will ever differ. Take me for instance I haven't had a MS symptom in years....if it wasn't for the piriformis injury and the side effect of the cortisteriods injections from pain management . I don't believe anything is different for me.And believe me all that I've been threw between the auto accident-pain management- all their lies-piriformis injury caused by the chiropractor-lawyers my stress level would be rated somewhere as off the chart as in "infinity and well-well beyond". My Ms should have proven itself a hundred time over with unpleasant and numerous MS symptoms but nothing occurred

Your exacerbations when you have one do they go away or will they leave something behind. Snoopy61...I am not ambulatory since my last series of injection, and I don't believe it's the MS that put me here. It seemed other circumstances did.. Oh my god I think I said enough. If there is anything you like to ask me ask away...I said enough. My next reply I will address a timeline like you did.Plus I'd like to talk about the use of Copaxone. This is so long I'm not even going to re-read it....goog luck.

((hugs))

 
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